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Oil price falls to $72 a barrel — first time since December 2021

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Oil price fell on Wednesday to $72 a barrel for the first time in more than one year.

Brent crude, the global oil benchmark, fell over 5 percent to $72.39 a barrel — first time since December 2021.

The US West Texas Intermediate also fell over 5 percent to $67.06 a barrel.

According to Reuters, the price of the commodity dropped as worries about Credit Suisse shook global markets and countered expectations of a recovery in Chinese oil demand.

Credit Suisse shares slumped by 30 percent on Wednesday after Saudi National Bank (SNB), its largest shareholder, said it could not provide further support.

“It doesn’t matter what your risk asset is, at this point people are pulling the plug on across different instruments here,” Robert Yawger, director of energy futures at Mizuho in New York, told Reuters.

“Nobody wants to go home with a big position on anything today… you have nowhere to hide really.”

Also speaking on the dip, Dennis Kissler, senior vice-president of trading at BOK Financial, said hedge funds were liquidating due to rising interest rates and economic uncertainty.

He said heavy pressure on the United States stocks earlier today, was adding to the fund liquidation in crude.

The current price of the commodity is now below the $75 benchmark in Nigeria’s 2023 budget.

In 2020, when a similar situation occurred, Zainab Ahmed, minister of finance, said the FG would lower the $57 benchmark of the country.

“What the impact will be on that is that there will be reduced revenue to the budget and it will mean cutting the size of the budget. The quantum of the cut is what we are supposed to assess as a committee,” she had said.

If Ahmed’s words are to be considered, it means the federal government may consider revising the country’s benchmark to fit the global oil price — if the downward trend is not reversed.

Bolade Agboola, oil and gas sector analyst at Meristem Securities Limited, had told TheCable that the advantage of the global oil price remaining above Nigeria’s benchmark is that the federal government will earn more revenue to finance its budget.

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Local airlines will soon start flying directly to South America, says Keyamo

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Festus Keyamo, minister of aviation, says the country is looking to commence direct flight operations to South America.

The minister made this known on Saturday during an interview with the statehouse media.

On March 20, Air Peace, Nigeria’s flag carrier, commenced its Lagos-London flight services.

Keyamo said more indigenous airlines would soon commence flight operations to other routes.

“We are looking at the American route, we are looking at the South American route,” he said.

“They are not even flying the South American route at all but something is in the offering for us to start that route now so as to help the Nigerian flying public to bring down their prices.”

He said this is one aspect of helping local airline to enforce Bilateral aviation safety agreement (BASA).

According to the minister, this will also ensure “you tell the countries that this is our flag carriers, present them as your flag carriers and so they respect them as Nigeria’s representative not as just private businesses in Nigeria”.

Speaking further, Keyamo said in the 2024 budget, there is provision for a master plan for the ministry.

The master plan, he said, is not to redesign the terminal buildings at airports but to modify the electropolis.

Keyamo said it would be done in all airports, starting with the five international airports.

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FAAN warns airport users against offering bribes, encouraging extortion

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The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has warned airport users against offering bribes and encouraging extortion this Sallah season.

The authority gave the warning on Friday in a statement issued by Obiageli Orah, its director of public affairs and consumer.

According to FAAN, any staff or government agency operating at the airports found guilty of accepting bribes will face punishment.

“The MD of FAAN Mrs Olubunmi Kuku, at a recent event had sent out a severe warning to staff as well as all government agencies that operate at our airports that FAAN will ensure that whoever is culpable is punished,” the authority said.

“Do not give bribes or encourage extortion.”

FAAN also assured Nigerians of seamless travels through its airports this festive season, adding that the authority has consistently upgraded its security measures to ensure the safety of travellers and their property.

The authority advised all travellers to arrive at the airport early to avoid missing their flights and to reduce the rush.

“International travellers must be at the airport three hours before departure, while local travellers must ensure to arrive about two hours to flight schedule,” FAAN said.

“Please ensure that you pack your luggage by yourself. Do not leave your luggage unattended.

“FAAN has expanded the screening area in order to give passengers a better flying experience.

“Keep an eye on your valuables while passing through screening.

“Respect rules and regulations in respect of carriage of prohibited articles, liquids, and gel.

“We have information desks at all our airports to assist you. Please make use of them.”

FAAN also advised travellers to park their vehicles properly in the car park to avoid towing, urging them not to use the services of touts.

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Naira depreciates against dollar at parallel, official markets

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Naira appreciates to N1,419/$ at official market

The naira depreciated in the parallel section of the foreign exchange (FX) market on Friday.

At the Lagos street market, currency traders, also known as bureau de change (BDC) operators, said the naira depreciated to N1,485 against the dollar.

The black market traders put the buying price of the dollar at N1,460 and the selling price at N1,485 — leaving a profit margin of N25.

This represents N5 or 0.34 percent depreciation compared to the N1,480/$ reported on May 10.

At the FMDQ Exchange, a platform that oversees official foreign exchange (FX) trading in Nigeria, the local currency depreciated by 0.44 percent or N6.48 to N1,482.72/$ on Friday — from N1,476.24/$ on May 13.

The dollar traded as high as N1,490/$ and as low as N1,390 during trading hours.

The daily FX market turnover stood at $183.47 million.

At the current FX rates, the gap between the official window and the parallel market is N2.28.

On June 5 Fitch Ratings, a global rating agency, projected naira will end the year at N1,450 to a dollar.

Gaimin Nonyane, director, Middle-East and Africa sovereigns, at Fitch Ratings, said despite the volatility experienced by the naira since its floating in June 2023, there are expectations that the fluctuation will reduce by the third quarter (Q3) of 2024.

Nonyane projected a gradual depreciation of the naira in 2025, adding that this depends largely on the foreign exchange reform’s momentum.

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Bodex F. Hungbo, SPMIIM is a multiple award-winning Nigerian Digital Media Practitioner, Digital Strategist, PR consultant, Brand and Event Expert, Tv Presenter, Tier-A Blogger/Influencer, and a top cobbler in Nigeria.

She has widespread experiences across different professions and skills, which includes experiences in; Marketing, Media, Broadcasting, Brand and Event Management, Administration and Management with prior stints at MTN, NAPIMS-NNPC, GLOBAL FLEET OIL AND GAS, LTV, Silverbird and a host of others

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